• Keystone pipeline clears another hurdle as Nebraska governor approves project

    On Tuesday, Nebraska governor Dave Heineman notified President Obama that he approved the controversial Keystone XL pipeline to go through the state. This marks a significant step forward in the project, which was delayed by the administration last year.

  • Mexican officials hope for real changes in U.S. gun policy

    The majority of the guns used in drug-related violence in Mexico have come from the United States. Numbers from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco Firearms and Explosives show that  almost 70 percent of the 99,000 weapons seized in Mexico in 2012 came from the United States. Mexican officials are hoping that president Obama’s speeches on changing the U.S. gun policy will be more than just talk.

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  • Controversial full-body scanners at U.S. airports to be replaced

    The  controversial full-body airport scanners which  upset many  passengers because of the anatomically accurate images they produced, will be removed from U.S. airports by June, according to the Transportation Security Administration(TSA), ending a $40 million contract with Rapiscan Systems, the manufacturer of the scanners. Rapiscan’s backscatter X-ray scanners are being replaced by less intrusive millimeter wave scanners.

  • Ariz. Governor Brewer offers a softer approach to illegal immigration

    Arizona governor Jan Brewer has made a name for herself for always taken a her hard line stance on the subject of illegal immigration, but recently she has begun to soften her tone on the issue. While Brewer’s position has not changed —  she prefers border security over immigration reform — her tone has, as the State of the State address last week suggests.

  • Privately run detention center locks up immigrants for months

    Hundreds of immigrants who have committed minor offenses have been locked up for weeks or months at a time in a Broward County, Florida facility run by a private company. The majority of the immigrants have been accused of entering the country illegally or staying longer than were allowed to.

  • Obama unveils comprehensive proposal to curb gun violence

    President Obama earlier today proposed the most comprehensive gun-control policies in a generation. He also initiated twenty-three separate executive actions aiming to curb what he called “the epidemic of gun violence in this country.” In addition to executive measures, the president called on Congress to pass legislation to ban assault weapons and high-capacity magazines for civilian use, and to require universal background checks for all gun buyers.

  • Saudi Arabia defends beheading

    Saudi Arabia defended its execution of a Sri Lankan maid for the death of an infant she was watching. The Saudi authorities also had harsh words for the international criticism of her beheading. Human rights advocates, pointing out that the maid was 17 years old (the Saudis say she was 21), and the Saudi Arabia violated international conventions by executing her

  • New York to make state’s strict gun laws even stricter

    New York State is nearing an agreement on a proposal to put some of the toughest gun-control laws into effect. The laws include expanding the definition of banned assault weapons, limiting magazines to seven rounds, and requiring background checks on people who buy ammunition

  • Biden hints at executive action on gun violence

    Vice President Biden on Wednesday said the White House could use executive orders to advance gun control measures. Biden held a series of meetings Wednesday in the White Housed on the topic of gun violence and the ways to reduce it; in a meeting with gun-safety and victims groups, Biden said: “There are executive orders, executive action that can be taken,” adding: “we haven’t decided what that is yet”

  • Advocates of immigration reform eye Canada’s guest worker program as a model

    When many Mexicans head north for seasonal work, they no longer have to smuggle their way through the U.S.–Mexican border; now they can hop a fight to Canada; in a government-to-government deal between Mexico and Canada, almost 16,000 temporary Mexican workers are able to earn good wages in Canada as part of a guest worker program; as discussions about immigration reform in the United States continue, some eye the Canadian guest worker program as a model to be emulated

  • U.S. spends more on immigration enforcement than on all other federal criminal law enforcement agencies combined

    The United States has spent nearly $187 billion on federal immigration enforcement over the past twenty-six years — more than the spending on all other principal federal criminal law enforcement agencies combined; the nearly $18 billion spent on federal immigration enforcement in fiscal 2012 is approximately 24 percent higher than collective spending for the FBI, Drug Enforcement Administration, Secret Service, U.S. Marshals Service, and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

  • White House considering gun-control measures beyond assault weapons ban

    Sources in the White House say the administration is considering a broader and strategy on guns control in the wake of the Newton, Connecticut, mass shooting; the approach being considered will go farther than a ban on certain types of assault weapons; the Biden task force, which will submit its recommendations to President Obama in a few weeks, is leaning toward adoption of measures recommended by the law enforcement community, among them requiring universal background checks for firearm buyers, tracking the movement and sale of weapons through a national database, strengthening mental health checks, and stiffening penalties for carrying guns near schools or giving them to minors

  • FDA issues new food safety rules to fight contamination

    One in six Americans becomes ill from eating contaminated food each year; most of them recover without harm, but bout 130,000 are hospitalized and 3,000 die; the FDA estimates the new food safety rules could prevent about 1.75 million illnesses each year

  • Arizona GOP senators to push for immigration reform

    Arizona’s Republican Senators — veteran John McCain and newly elected Jeff Flake – let it be known that they would on the forefront of a bipartisan effort in Congress to overhaul U.S. immigration law; the two Arizona senators are now part of a bipartisan group of eight senators promoting a new comprehensive immigration reform plan

  • Court: Justice Dept. does not have to disclose legal memo justifying targeted killing of U.S. citizens

    Judge Colleen McMahon on Wednesday refused to order the Justice Department to disclose a memorandum which provided the legal justification for the targeted killing on September 2011 of Anwar al-Awlaki, a U.S. citizen; al-Awlaki, a fervent jihadi cleric, was killed in Yemen by a CIA drone